American Tragedy Essay

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They locked each of us into an economy where fossil fuel consumption continues to be a necessity, not a choice.

This is what makes attacks on individual behavior so counterproductive.

Hardin practically calls for a fascist state to snuff out unwanted gene pools. Hardin was a virulent nativist whose ideas inspired some of today’s ugliest anti-immigrant sentiment.

He believed that only racially homogenous societies could survive.

This creates a vicious cycle of environmental degradation that Hardin described as the “tragedy of the commons.” It's hard to overstate Hardin’s impact on modern environmentalism.

His views are taught across ecology, economics, political science and environmental studies.His writings and political activism helped inspire the anti-immigrant hatred spilling across America today.And he promoted an idea he called “lifeboat ethics”: since global resources are finite, Hardin believed the rich should throw poor people overboard to keep their boat above water.Environmental sustainability cannot exist without environmental justice.Are we really prepared to follow Hardin and say there are only so many lead pipes we can replace?Yes, it’s great to drive an electric vehicle (if you can afford it) and purchase solar panels (if powerful utilities in your state haven’t conspired to make renewable energy more expensive).But the point is that interest groups have structured the choices available to us today.That Hardin’s tragedy was advanced as part of a white nationalist project should not automatically condemn its merits. They were not free-for-all grazing sites where people took and took at the expense of everyone else.Many global commons have been similarly sustained through community institutions.But here are some inconvenient truths: Hardin was a racist, eugenicist, nativist and Islamophobe.He is listed by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a known white nationalist.


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